ALEXANDRIA, VA. - Media Research Center President Brent Bozell today responded to ABC World News Tonight anchor Peter Jenningss dismissal of MRC research showing that Jenningss Middle East coverage is biased. Jennings called the MRCs proof silly Friday on CNNs Larry King Live:
LARRY KING: How do you react, by the way, before taking the next call, to some of the controversy that surround you? And I know Brent Bozell, a columnist, has criticized you as being kind of pro-Arab, and I've heard this for years.
PETER JENNINGS: Well, I think it's a bit silly.
We have a library of evidence that documents Mr. Jenningss pro-Arab bias on the air, bias to the point where he will not even call obvious terrorists the terrorists they are. His pro-Arab spin on terrorism and the Middle East misrepresents the facts and misleads the public. Its a grave disservice especially in a time of war, Bozell said.
Evidence of Peter Jenningss Bias In Middle East Reporting
April 20, 2002 ABC covered a pro-Palestinian rally in Washington, D.C., but Jennings ignored a pro-Israel rally in Washington held just six days earlier.
April 15, 2002 Jennings apologized for Palestinian terrorist coordinator Marwan Barghouti when he was captured by Israeli Defense forces. Jennings: Today in Ramallah the Israelis arrested a Palestinian whos been central to the Palestinian uprising against the occupation. His name is Marwan Barghouti. He was in favor of the peace process until, as he told an Israeli newspaper, the Israelis didnt withdraw from the territories and went on building Jewish settlements. Jennings then went on to describe how two Palestinian girls were trapped in California because they could not return to their homeland.
April 11, 2002 Jennings neglected to report that a Saudi Arabian telethon was providing money for the families of homicide bombers, something widely reported by other media.
April 2, 2002 Jennings opened the broadcast by lamenting how at least a dozen people died ... all Palestinians, as the Israeli campaign in the occupied territories became more aggressive. But in conflict with Jennings intended implication, they werent all caused by the Israeli army. As CBSs Dan Rather noted, one was a Palestinian bomber who blew himself up.
March 28, 2002 Jennings on Hezbollah: The Bush administration says Hezbollah is a terrorist organization. Hezbollah was proud to resist the Israeli occupation, [Nasrallah] says. We gave our lives. We are not terrorists, Jennings translated. It was Hezbollah that blew up the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut in 1983 in an obvious terrorist attack.
December 4, 2001 When the Bush administration froze the assets of the Arab terrorist group Hamas, both NBC News and CBS News correctly labeled Hamas as a terrorist organization, but Jennings refused to do so. In the same newscast, Jennings blamed Israel for an explosion of violence in the Middle East, while CBSs Rather noted it was Israels latest answer to a wave of Palestinian terror attacks.
December 3, 2001 After the terrorist group Hamas claimed responsibility for a murderous terrorist attack on Israel, Jennings could only call Hamas an organization.
If Dan Rather can see that it is terrorists who are murdering innocent people why cant Peter Jennings? Bozell said. Even as a reporter covering the Palestinian terrorist attack on Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics, Jennings would not refer to the murderers of those 11 athletes as terrorists. He called them guerrillas and commandos. Unfortunately, some things never change.